Preparing for Labor Naturally

For this pregnancy and labor, I did some things I have done before to prepare, but I also added in a few new natural ways to stay healthy.

Natural, healthy labor and delivery

We all know it is so important to stay (or get) healthy during pregnancy. Here are a few things I did for this pregnayc, labor and delivery.

    • Third Trimester Tea– Beginning in my third trimester I started drinking *a lot* of Earth Mama Angel Baby Organic Third Trimester Tea. I like the taste, and drank anywhere from 1-4 cups a day.
    • Get plenty of rest– I got plenty of sleep. My husband joked about how I was in bed 18 hours out of the day … it is quote possible I was. I slept from 8:30 until 7 in the morning (most days), took naps when my children did (for 1-3 hours, and laid down in bed at 7 when the kids went down. This was mostly because I couldn’t sit comfortably with a baby in my ribs, but I probably would have slept that much anyway!
    • Exercise– honestly, I didn’t exercise this pregnancy like I did with my others. When I had the time I didn’t have the energy. I know exercise gives you more energy, but not when you have first trimester nausea and extreme exhaustion, or can barely move in the third trimester. I did walk to the park a lot with the kids, and in my second trimester I did quite a bit of at home work outs. But nothing as intense or regular as my first two pregnancies.
    • Eat well– Eating lots of healthy fats won’t make you fat (unless you coat them in sugar…). Healthy fats help every part of your body and baby’s development. From brain function to hormone production, healthy fats like organic farm raised eggs, avocado, coconut oil, grass fed butter, and natural peanut butter, make for a healthy pregnancy and baby! I ate a *lot* of eggs, and still do.
    • Fermented Drinks and Foods– Fermented drinks like water kefir and Kombucha are so good for your gut and immune system; they are especially beneficial to baby’s gut and developing immune system. I drank lots of kombucha with mint this summer, and we enjoyed our homemade fermented kraut, kimchi, and veggies all summer as well.
    • Cod Liver Oil, Iron, and Folate– I personally chose not to take a pre natal vitamin. I made this decision because typical prenatals are full of synthetic vitamins that the body does not absorb or process well. And also, because I couldn’t find one I liked with folate instead of folic acid. Typically though, my friend recently showed me a supplement similar to this l-methylfolate 15 mg, which includes folate. Anyway, I’m not getting pregnant again to try it, haha! So, folic acid is the synthetic, man made version of folate. Folate is the actual supplement you need for baby’s development- not synthetic folic acid. So I chose to take a pure folate supplement, and raw liver pills I made at home. I am always anemic, and most iron supplements cause constipation and are not readily absorbed in the body. I chose to buy grass fed, organic beef livers (from a local source I know and *trust*) and cut them into pills. I froze them on a cookie sheet and stored in the freezer for a few weeks. Then I took a few of them at a time, frozen, when I felt I needed an iron boost. The last supplement I took was cod liver oil, because of all the healthy benefits it provides through vitamins A and D.
    • Gentle Birth Formula– I will say, I believe this had the BIGGEST impact on labor and delivery for me. My water broke at 2:30pm, active labor/my contractions started at regular intervals 4 minutes apart, at 4:00pm. When I got to the hospital at 6:00pm I was 5-6cm! This has NEVER happened to be before; I have longer (12+hours) labors. This baby was born at 9:49, and was here in 4 pushes. It was seriously a 5 hour labor start to finish, from the beginning of contractions. And though I did cave and get an epidural at 7 cm, until that point labor was very manageable; not fun, but manageable. I truly believe this tincture helped my body prepare for labor. *it does have blue cohosh in it, but you can purchase the tincture without it*
    • Water, Water, Water!-I think it speaks for itself, but lots of water! I keep two bottles in the fridge and down one at a time; when one is empty I refill it and start on the other.

And that’s it! Those are the things I did this pregnancy to prepare my body for labor and delivery, and have a healthy baby. What do you do to prepare your body for pregnancy, labor, and delivery?

Disclaimer: I am NOT a health professional and this is not health advice. Please talk with your doctor/midwife before making medical and health decisions.

Pregnancy Update- 39 weeks {last days as a family of 4}

Yes.  Hello there!  Coming at yah (still) 39 weeks 4 days pregnant.  Sunday the 14th will be 40 weeks.

39 weeks

one day I will be glad I posted this picture …

I will be honest, I didn’t think I would be pregnant this long, y’all.  I was sure baby would be here by now …  and I am trying VERY hard to be patient.  It is difficult, but the last few days I have felt better.  The baby has dropped so my ribs don’t feel like they are about to break in a million pieces anymore.  After 18 weeks of excruciating rib pain, that makes being pregnant a little more bearable.  I am also trying to savor the last days with my two oldest.

I’ve been having lots of contractions for the last week- and I don’t think they’re braxton hicks.  They tend to be painful & some nights I wake up thinking “oh, this is it!” … and it’s not.  They continue 5-10 minutes a part for hours and then just stop.  With baby dropping and evidence that I maybe have dilated a bit, I am encouraged that baby will be here before 41 weeks, but OH I hope it is sooner!  haha

I’ve been doing different exercises from Spinning Babies website to help get everything in balanced and in position; if there is no baby by tomorrow morning, I am probably going to run to my chiro and get adjusted.  Maybe that will get things going.

My doctor appointments have been fine- baby’s heart rate is good (140s), fundus height is measuring perfectly, my blood pressure is good, yadda yadda.  I had one pelvic exam at 37 weeks, but I won’t have anymore until labor.  Oddly, I saw a different doctor this week (my dr just didn’t have appointments I guess) and he said they don’t usually do an exam every week unless mom requests it.  In my experience all pelvic exams do is burst my baby-birthing bubble, because I never dilate or thin/soften much before labor anyway, they’re painful, and having a “stretch and sweep” has never resulted in me going into labor.  Baby will get here when baby gets here.

Thankfully, it seems they don’t push a lot of medical intervention here unless necessary, so I am hopeful the doctor will let me get to at least 41 weeks before he talks about induction.  The head of labor and delivery said they really encourage mom to walk around and move to labor, vs laying in bed (that’s a welcome change to what I had in AR!), you can have a nurse with you most of the time if you want (which I don’t…), and they will massage your back, hips, etc during labor!  (sweet!). So, I am looking forward to that part I think.  There are perks to delivering in a small town with more nurses than patients.  =)

I have been “nesting” I guess.  J.Tom cleaned out and organized the garage a few weeks ago, on Labor Day he helped me get all the light fixtures and fans down & cleaned, he dusted all the door frames and doors, and vacuumed the stairs.  He helped me get the curtains hung and the glider put in the nursery from downstairs.  I have all the baby clothes (boy and girl) clean and put away, and bought some newborn diapers for the weeks before we start cloth diapering.  The kids did the footprint paintings for the nursery- I’m not crazy about them, but it will do for now.  After baby comes and we finally settle on a name, I may make a wooden name for the nursery wall, but I am not sure yet.  We are all trying to keep the house semi-picked up and clean so there isn’t much to do once baby is here (aka, I can let it all go!).  The freezer is pretty full and the pantry is stocked.  Hopefully we are ready!

Then, the dog has gone into heat … so that is fun!  I am hoping that ends quickly!  She is wearing Lexie’s left over pull ups.  But, she is driving me nuts!  She is so … anxious.  And worrisome.  Poor girl, but we have done a lot of reading and just don’t feel comfortable spaying her this young.  JTom explained to Lexie that Charlie needed the diaper because she was ready to have pupppies, but mommy and daddy don’t want her to have puppies.  She didn’t ask about anything else, so we left it at that.. *whew* I expected a million questions like everything else …  Glad that didn’t happen!

There it is, our 39 week update.  Hopefully there won’t be a need for a 40 week update!  =)  We shall see …

Here are a few pictures from our last days (week) as a family of four!

last days as a family of 4


last days as a family of 4

bubbles with Charlie!

last days as a family of 4

My little (tom-boy) lady

last days as a family of 4

wrong way!

last days as a family of 4

riding while daddy washes cars

last days as a family of 4


last days as a family of 4

York Children’s Museum

last days as a family of 4

driving on a “long trip” @ York Children’s Museum

last days as a family of 4



Next time there will be three babies in our pictures!  =)

Pregnancy Update: 20 weeks

Last week we went to the doctor for our 20 week ultrasound.

Everything looks good- baby is a little above average on size, but really that is hard for even an ultrasound to know at this point.  Heart rate was 154 consistently and baby was super squirmy.  S/he was also very shy, covering their face and booty- not only could we not see the facial features but the tech couldn’t find out what gender baby was; legs were crossed at the ankles and hands were on the face the entire time.  In this picture you can see baby’s hand, and profile.  We will get another ultrasound at about 30-34 weeks.  Apparently our doctor likes to do ultrasounds twice- once in the middle, and once towards the end.

19w2d ultrasound

I am feeling good.  Some days I am up a few pounds, other days I am down a few pounds.  So I am still going with no weight gain?  =)  Belly is much bigger, and baby is kicking, moving all over the place and gets the hiccups a lot!  Lexie had hiccups all the time- I don’t remember Max getting them.  I just remember how often Lexie got them, and it was what seemed like all. the. time.

We are excited to still not know the gender.  We both almost caved the day before the scan, but decided we definitely do not want to know.  Our to do list for before pregnancy is sloooowly getting smaller.  Very, very slowly.  I am not sure that we will get bunk beds built, because A) I still want Max in his crib, and B) I don’t think JTom will have time to build them anyway, with all our projects and his traveling.  So, they will probably just share a crammed bedroom for a while.  I am okay with that.

In typical second-trimester style, I have more energy than I did during the first 13-15 weeks trimester.  I do have days that I am wiped out, but overall feel good.

So … yea.  That’s it for the half way point.  Yay!

Sonlight P4/5: What I think so far

After I wrote this post , I did a lot of praying, thinking, re-googling and reading, and a lot more praying.

The next morning I woke up, and began purchasing what we need for Sonlight P4/5 for next year.  Between Sonlight, Amazon, and eBay I got everything we need, plus supplemental materials, for less than the package from SL.  This is important to our family; we try to live on a budget and I needed homeschool for this year to fit into that budget.

Sonlight P 4/5 review Part 1

I don’t know if we will go with SL in the future?  I don’t know if it will (mostly) fit what I want for my kids as they get older, but I do know after looking in the instructor’s guide for P4/5, it will fit us perfectly this year!

In the Instructor’s Guide, I am excited to see (and wasn’t expecting):

  • extra activities, cognitive and hands on, that we can add into our lessons and Max can be included
  • room to write in other activities- like our extra memory work, math lessons, etc
  • character traits to focus on that go with the week’s memory verse (LOVE character lessons in this house)

I went back and ordered the binder and tabs.  The tabs (which are weekly) can’t be found elsewhere up to week 36, and the binders have their own reputation for holding up well.  I also bought extra color-coding stickers for our book spines, because I plan to add more books into our reading.  (I may get their P3/4 sticker labels for our BFIAR books, so I can organize them as well for Max later.)  We read a lot.  But what I like about adding in our own selections is that we can read them as quickly or as slowly as we want, and it just adds more great literature.

There are a few titles that I am super excited about; the The Berenstain Bears’ Big Book of Science and Nature is one of them!  I think that will fit nicely with our Big Book of Play and Find Out Science Projects we will add in on our own, and nature studies.

Another title I think will be fun is the audio CD of American Tall Tales.  We love books on CD, and this looks like a great one.  We have the stories that go along with these in our book of Children’s fairytales and fables, A Treasury of Children’s Literature, though Sonlight doesn’t actually call for the physical books for them.

Now, I just have to structure out our extra memory work (poems), All About Reading, and Saxon math lessons into our schedule, and we will be ready to go!  Well, I also have to decide when we will begin, because with baby #3 coming in September, we will need to start early (probably August); but I also like the idea of just taking the month before baby to do nothing but spend time with the kids outside and hold the structure off until after baby comes.  Who know what we will do!  =)

Have you used Sonlight P4/5 in your homeschool?  Are you using something else?  Please share in the comments!


Pregnancy #3 Update: Beginning of Second Trimester

Well, with my first two pregnancies I updated pretty regularly. This time, we didn’t announce the pregnancy until almost 12 weeks, so I haven’t really been writing updates thus far.

We are almost 16 weeks along now; I had a doctor appointment last week and everything was great. The heartbeat was 157 (I think…) and the doctor okayed me to stop the progesterone supplements. My next appointment is in April and we will have the anatomy scan. Here, they only do one ultrasound (what’s up with that?!) at 20 weeks. We had an ultrasound at 6 weeks, to date and confirm the pregnancy.

6 week 2 day ultrasound- Quiet in the chaos

We will not, however, be finding out the gender. We have a girl and a boy, all babies are September babies and the nursery can be gender neutral. I am good with that. (ok, so if you know me well, you are probably as surprised as I am that I am okay with not “planning” for a girl or boy…) The urge I have to perform a home baby gender test is a little too strong at the moment!

The surprise of finding out in the delivery room with only my husband far surpasses my innate need to plan, design, and decorate. I can’t wait to spend that moment with him. We are also not talking names. To anyone. Or to each other, for that matter. =)

J.Tom and I haven’t even discussed names, because we can’t seem to agree on anything. So, I figure if we wait until we have him or her in our arms, we can whip out the handy dandy name list and we can go from there. I just don’t feel like arguing over names, or listening to other people’s opinions of names when we don’t even have a name semi narrowed down yet. *and I’m not saying that all snotty* If we happen to come up with names before the baby arrives, I will be happy to discuss. But we said this time we want to wait until we have our baby in our arms, and that’s what I am sticking with.

It will be fun.

Lexie is very excited about “baby #3.” We don’t call the baby “the new baby” because that just seems mean to the siblings. So it is baby #3. Max is pretty clueless, of course. He is too obsessed with eating, throwing things, and chasing the dog.

Oh yes, we got a new dog. She’s furry, and sweet, and smart, and precious.

We will room Lexie and Max together. For now we are planning on J.Tom building bunk beds- the top bunk will be above the crib, and then when Max is ready to move to a big bed we will build a bed frame for a bottom bunk. I really like snuggling in the bed with Lexie, so maybe I will just put the crib in her room and take out a dresser…. It is up in the air for now.

It is hard watching my babies all grow up on me! It is exciting, of course. This pregnancy wasn’t originally planned. After experiencing a loss in early December, we decided at the very last minute (literally) to try for baby #3. The timing worked out to being another September baby, which I had hoped would happen, but hadn’t actually thought would happen. Just before our loss and all we decided to wait another year. Funny how God works.

No nausea since about week 12-13. I have 3-4 days of TONS of energy, and then a day or two where I am exhausted and can’t keep my eyes open. I workout a few times a week with T25, or we go for walks on warmer days. No weight gain so far (well, technically I gained back the weight I lost in the fall, but that happened before this pregnancy, so I don’t count it) but I am pretty sure my hips are bigger! How does that happen? … And I haven’t lost the weight from Max, so it doesn’t seem likely that I need to gain much. The doctor is good with that.

Still praying for a healthy 5 more months. I hope to go full term, as usual. Big healthy babies seem more durable when you have a Max Payne running around the house. Poor Mister, he has no idea what is coming! Then again, neither do I.

Pray for me, friends! =)


Preparing for Next Year’s Homeschool: PreK 4/5 Curriculum Choices {2014/2015}

curriculum choice 2014/2015 Sonlight

Well, for years months and months I have gone back and forth over what we will use for our curriculum next fall.  What curriculum, what style suites us best, what will keep Lexie’s fire going, her passion for learning; what will also work for Max so we can reuse some materials, etc.

I have also had to consider what will be easiest to fit into our life, with baby #3 due in September of this year.  =)

As you know I have mostly decided on a classical/Charlotte Mason education style for our family because it just fits us (and our love of the outdoors, learning, and books); but I have also been contemplating joining Classical Conversations.  There is a community not too far from us that a dear friend is also a part of.  I really enjoyed the open house I attended and Lexie did AMAZING sitting in the room with me for the 2 hours we were there.  However, I just don’t know if we are ready for it yet.

love the Charlotte Mason approach to learning.  It encompasses everything I believe about education and family uniting.  It is Biblically based, and literature rich (so is classical education).  It is truly where my passion for learning and educating my children comes full circle.

Charlotte Mason is also what I see in my children.  I see Lexie loving books- asking questions about everything we read; wanting to know more and making connections from her books to her world.  Max is beginning the same process- he didn’t love reading books at first, but at about 13 months old, he became obsessed with them, just like big sister.  When I sit on the floor, he will bring me a book and say, “boo-k,” turn around and plop into my lap.  He then proceeds to open the book and I will read.  He really likes for me to take his finger and point to everything in the picture and say its name.  He loves reading.  And that tells me he will also love learning.

I want to keep their fires burning, but I need to do that in a way that will fit our young family’s lifestyle.  As a busy mom of soon-to-be 3, there won’t be much time for the intense planning that a combined classical/Charlotte Mason style education can require.  So in the fall, (well, really in January probably) I think we will begin with Sonlight’s P4/5 curriculum.

Sonlight P 4/5 includes: read alouds and language arts, science, Bible, rediness skills, beautiful art books and studies, and introduces world cultures.  One thing I love about classical education is it begins history at the beginning.  So children not only learn there is much, much more to their world than just their immediate surroundings, but they also learn where it all began.  Sonlight does an amazing job of choosing wonderful children’s literature and living books to teach every subject, which is where the Charlotte Mason style comes in.  Another point I love is that Sonlight is fairly adaptable.  You can supplement with as many books as you’d like, whatever math you prefer (although they sell a few great curricula), and you can make it work with just about any style of education, if you really want to.  Their book list is what has driven their popularity for years, but as more and more families have used it, the more it has become known for being a wonderful core curriculum.  (no, this is not a review and I am not being paid to say any of this!).

We already have a phonics/reading program we will use, which we haven’t started yet.  I chose All About Reading because it is so child friendly and hands on, which I think will be fine for Lexie (as I am mostly sure she has a photographic memory) but I know will be great for Mister, because he is my 100% tactile learner.  We will use this with our Sonlight, along with Saxon or Horizon’s math, and a few supplemental activities in science.

I have many friends ask me about two things :1) homeschool curricula and options and 2) converting to a healthier, real food lifestyle.  #1 is mostly why I am writing this post.

I tell you, I cannot wait to get started next year.  We might begin in August, to get a head start, then take off in September-Christmas with the baby coming, holidays, etc., then start back in January.  Or we may just begin in january and go through part of the summer…  I know me, and I know Lexie, and chances are we will not want to take that much time off.  We both crave structure and our learning time together, so I imagine we will get back to it pretty quickly.

One thing I am really looking forward to is not having to plan and print every thing we do in this season of life.  Right now, I am using a printable curriculum (that we both love) and we are doing Five in A Row which is Charlotte Mason style, but requires all the planning be done by the parent. So it requires a lot of time on my part.  Sonlight has done most of the work for me, meaning I can enjoy my time teaching, learning, and snuggling, all three of my babies this fall.

So, I have to get busy filling orders in my etsy shop, since that is how I plan to pay for this curriculum!  haha  If you haven’t noticed I haven’t been writing much lately.  There is a two fold reason for this. 1) The first trimester of this pregnancy has kicked my butt!  Between the extreme nausea and exhaustion, I am just now catching up on household duties! and 2) I have been very busy making baby blankets in my etsy shop.  I keep saying I am going to slow down, finish my drapes for the kitchen, and make a few dresses for Lexie, but so far that hasn’t happened.  Hopefully soon!

Playing in the Dirt

I don’t have a green thumb, my husband does. However, he is so busy with work he has no time this year for the prepping and planting of our plants and garden. So yesterday I went to our county exchange office and got the boxes for our soil samples. Then I came home, dug up some dirt from the yard, garden, and flowers beds, and took it all back to the exchange office. We should have some test results in a few weeks; they will tell us what type of soil we have, what grows best, and offer suggestions based on what we said would be grown in each bed.

It has been such a long time since we have been able to spend time together outside I cannot wait to get out in the garden again. Which reminds me, a friend of mine has recently had to reach out to a pest control expert after her garden became infested with ants. Ants can be a nuisance when they get into your home. Although ants are not thought to carry diseases, the trouble is you cannot know where they have been foraging outside, so you do not want them inside your food cupboards. Correspondingly, if you are having trouble with ants in your house or garden, then you might want to call out a team of experts to find a solution. For more information about dealing with ants and other pests, go to

Today, Lexie and I went to Lowe’s for some soil and flowers. While we were there I grabbed some herb seeds, a long planter, and some rosemary plants. I need another herb planter, though. I don’t have enough room in the one for each type of seed. They didn’t have any mint, which stinks- that is one of my favorite herbs! We got pansies for the big planters out doors, and a few clearance plants for pots in the house. Let’s pray I grow a green thumb soon…

Lexie helped me plant the herbs this morning, AKA, she played in the dirt with the “shovel” and watering can. This afternoon should be great fun! I will post pics.

OK, so no pics. =( My video camera has died. For good. And my other camera needs batteries and we are out. So I did take one or two with my phone, but am not going to take the time to upload them tonight.
However, as you can imagine, Lexie had a BLAST! She was covered head to tow in dirt, and mud. It was so warm here today, I turned the water spicket on low and let her just play in the water, with her rain gardening boots on, of course. She used the trowel to scoop dirt into the watering bucket, and helped put the pansies into their proper holes. We planted six pots, and still have a flat of flowers left. So it looks like I am going to go get some coconut baskets for my hanging baskets and plant in there, too.

Daddy came home for a minute since he has been in meetings for 3 days and hasn’t seen us at lunch; he helped me get the bird houses out and the paint to paint those. He built us some bird houses that you attach to the window with heavy duty suction cups! The side that faces the window is see through plexi glass, so you can see the birds in their nest! It was an idea I saw on pinterest, and JTom made it come to life. So anyway, I painted them the color of our shutters and after they finish drying and get another coat, we will put them up! Hopefully a little sparrow or some other little birds will make a nest in there and get used to us looking in on them.

I will try to get some pictures up of our pretty pansies and bird houses sometime this week or weekend.


16 months old

rSo last week while my mom was here, lexie and i were playing with her peeka blocks on the floor. I stacked one and said “one” then she did the next three and counted “two, three, four!” giving each block it’s own number! I know right?! Mom and I practically squealed we were so excited, that would be the teacher comingout in both of us. Then, when my mom is here, she always pulls up and let’s lexie play with the abcs game. (here’s the back story- lexie has a little toy barn w letter you push through the top and she loves them! I have always told her what each letter was, and she would repeat after me. So she has had early exposure to literacy in that way. It’s not like we are forcing education down a baby’s throat- it’s all through play and conversation or reading, which she loves.). So anyway, she and mom play on that website, and lexie now says “a, /a/.” the /a/ means she is sounding out the a! So it’s “a, /a/,” and then sometimes she says “apple” afterward! The sequence on the game is the exact same; it amazes me that she knows this. And if you ask her what B SAYS, SHE WILL RESPOND /b/. Just this morning she picked the B from the bag of foam letters, and said “B, /b/.” I swear. It’s amazing what children will do if you just give them the tools. One day she will understand what all of it really means.

And, she has started singing her abcs. It’s pretty funny, because at any time during the day you could record about 15 minutes in our house, and one of us will be singing and/or dancing. Lexie sings all day. She sings “clean up clean up” when she outs her toys away, when I wipe her face, or when she picks her blocks up off the floor and outs them on her table. She sings silly songs with mama, I say the words and she just mumbles along. And she now sings her Abcs. Haha. It goes something like this, “A, um, oo, ah, b, hmm, ooo, da, b, ah, we, nam, num, I.” Lol. Now sing that to the tune of the abcs. It’s precious and I’m going to try to record her doing it, but I’m sure she will stop once I get the camera out. The last week or two she has started saying whole phrases and a few complete sentences. They have included “Bye Daddy,” “silly mommy!” and “Silly daddy!” I can’t remember what her sentences were, it’s been a while. =/

Also, the other day I got her a swing! We’ve been wanting to get one for some time, but just never got around to it. A lady posted one on free cycle, and I got it! It’s a blue dolphin? I dunno what’s up with that, but it’s a fisher price and in good condition. Lexie loves it! She won’t be in it much longer, because she is the size of a two year old … But it will do until we get her a swing set this summer I hope. Oh yes- for her birthday this year jtom is going to build her a swing set! We may buy one like these Colorado swing sets for sale, if things just get too busy, but i know he wants to build it, then we will add all the swings and slide. She loves the playground and slide at the park, so I know she will love having one of her own. I can’t wait!

And a funny story- we were in the devils den walmart Wednesday. You know I’m methodical in everything I do, grocery shopping is one of them. I make my shopping list according to the route I take in the store, depending on the store. I also take my AMEX Blue Cash Preferred card to make sure that I earn rewards on my purchases. If I forget my card, the day is ruined! At walmart, my route looks like this: pharmacy for toothpaste, dog food, etc. To the back for diapers if her school is low. Then to the front for produce, around to the meats, back to the cheese, milk, and eggs. Then I shop the inside aisles and finish in the frozen section if we need veggies for baby. Well, on this day we started in produce because I didn’t need anything from the pharmacy. The minute I put the blue berries in the cart, SOMEONE starts yelling “boobies! Boobies!” while kicking her legs. “boobies” is lexie talk for blue berries (mom, she has that beginning sound down!). So I tear the tape off the container, and start shoving boobies blue berries into her mouth and my pockets. I filled my pockets up so I could just feed them to her while we shopped. She ate all but about 10 blue berries in the pint. But I left there with a happy toddler! Whew. She’s a mess.

“bye, bye”-wanting Payne to go read

My dad came this weekend, and we had such a great time! He got in sat morning; we visited outside while jtom worked on the bench for our table. He brought Guss who played like he was puppy again, not a 10 yr old dog. Payne pulled lexie around the yard in the wagon, and they had a big time! Saturday afternoon, while lexie napped and I rested, the boys went to the woods and shot guns. Ooh, those are days I miss! Next time lexie will stay w someone while I get to go shoot too! Haha. But anyways, so they had a big time in the woods and then Sunday we just played and visited until dad left that afternoon. Lexie was constantly asking her Payne to go “bye” with her. She asked him to “eee” which is read to her, and of course teased him all day wi her silliness. When she woke up from her nap, she asked for “Mayne. Mayne”. (Payne Payne). It was pretty cute. She loves her Payne for sure!

Her outfit of choice-wouldn’t take off the boots or hat!

Payne and Lexie reading “Nose”

I wrote the above about a week ago. Today is Monday the 9th. I wanted to mention, that speaking of “boobies” Lexie’s Papa and SueSue went to the Galapagos Islands last week. They had a fantastic time and said that this Guide to luxury in Galapagos is essential for anyone who wants to visit the beautiful island. It’s definitely on my bucket list! They brought her home a (toy) Blue Footed Boobie. lol It’s a bird only found in the Galapagos, you should Google it. =) Now Lexie knows her elbows, knees and back (sometimes). She also loves to read her Bible-it is currently her favorite book. I am okay with that! haha We have been battling thrush for a few weeks-t comes and goes. Since it replicates itself in a different strand every few days, it makes it hard to kill it off. UH-not fun! But she is doing well with it.

She LOVES the coconut oil I’m using to help treat it. Plus it is good for her, even when she’s not sick. I plan on writing a post about the benefits of coconut oil and its many many uses! I am eating a few tbsp a day of it-it is the best fats you can ingest, and helps with nails, skin, hair. I’m even using it as a moisturizer-me, pregnant Meghan with oily pregnancy skin and it’s AMAZING! Leaves my skin feeling like silk, and not even oily by the end of the day! I won’t go on here, but you should Google it, then go to your local foods store and buy a jar of organic, virgin pressed coconut oil! Best ten dollars I ever spent-and I plan on getting more!

New beginnings … Again

Each year for the last 3-4 years I have written a short list of things I am thankful for. This year that list would be so long if I included everything. So I am only going to mention a few things.

  • First is my amazing husband. We have a chemistry and friendship like no other. He is the most giving, practical, fun, loving husband and daddy in the world. He is Lexie’s hero and my sanity. I am most grateful for him and his selflessness.
  • Of course, Lexie is next. She is the best thing that has ever happened to me. She teaches me new things about life every single day and helps me push my limits (of course, what else is a toddler to do?). I have more fun being her Mommy and playmate than anything I have ever done in my entire life.
  • I am thankful for my part-time cleaning business and being a stay at home mom. I will start with the cleaning business-if it were not for friends encouraging me, telling me I can do it, lifting me up when it didn’t seem to be going well, and keeping Lexie so I could begin, I would not have the business at all. I don’t make a lot of money, but I make enough to cover Lexie going to school 2xs a week, and to put a little back for savings. My plan is to train newly hired maids to expand my business but I’m taking things slowly at the minute!
  • Staying at home is the most amazing gift I have ever been given. Though there have been phases Lexie made me second guess myself, I would do absolutely anything to be home with her, even clean other people’s toilets twice a week. 😉 I can’t thank my husband enough for his support and encouragement so I can be a full time mama. I will never get these years back, and I am so thankful.
  • Next is my family. They put up with my craziness, OCDness, and don’t mind being quiet when the baby sleeps (because she no longer sleeps through everything like when she was 6 months old). They have supported our family, our decisions (and if not kept their mouths shut), and loved us unconditionally. Most importantly, they have prayed for our family and I believe that is the most powerful blessing. Thank you.
  • Here, I would like to mention how thankful I am to have a home. We bough a lot in the country this year, considered selling our house, looked at buying a house, and overall decided to stay put right where we are! To even have the above options we know is a blessing. Our home is just perfect for us, and it may take some more hard work and time, but we are going to make it even better. We did seriously think about moving home at one point though, we even looked at different estate agents on sites like getagent, and we even found some pretty nice houses as well. But then we sat down one evening and just were like why are we moving? We love the house that we are currently in, so we decided to stay.
  • Last, I am going to mention the “new” baby. Although right now, all we can do it pray there is a healthy baby in there. I don’t go to the doctor until Jan 24, at 8 weeks (that’s just how they do it … And one more reason why we probably should have waited to tell the world … but we are weak!) So keep us in your prayers that everything is growing healthily and happily, and that we get a good report come Jan 24th!

A few updates:

As we save money for the few updates of the house, I am writing out my to do lists. I plan to repaint all the trim (a white, instead of the icky cream we painted when we moved in. ick), redo all (bathrooms included) cabinets, tear out that damn a wall (every time we plan to do this, I wind up pregnant. Go figure!), and put in new carpet for the nursery before baby #2 gets here. This is going to require saving money in the next few months which means an even tighter than usual budget, but I think we can do it. Another option might be refinancing, I hear that Perth Broker could help with that from what a friend told me. I might have to have a conversation with them about it.

I sometimes wonder if people on the outside realize how hard it is for a family of (soon to be four) to live off ONE middle class income-by middle class I mean less than $100,000. I get this feeling sometimes that our hard work to save, NOT use credit cards, and be frugal is overlooked. And buy “our” I mean all the families with a stay at home mom and working husband. Were it not for our budget, organization, and thriftiness I could not stay home with Lexie. I say organization, because if you’re not organized, you don’t know what you have and therefore waste money buying products already stuffed in your cluttered cabinets. Of course a budget is key-knowing what you spend on everything each month, and sticking to it. For example, when the grocery budget runs out, you eat what’s left in the pantry that month until it’s all gone, then return to the grocery when you have to. It means not wasting left overs or letting food go bad. It also means limiting eating out, going on expensive date nights that involve a sitter, and making your own laundry detergent. =) I say none of this begrudgingly. I love this life. I couldn’t ask for anything more. Literally. I love budgeting our family and organizing our home. Most of all, I love being a full time homemaker-and I feel blessed to do so.

OK … on to a more fun topic- BABY!
I changed my mind (duh). I think we will put the new baby down stairs. She will share it with my craft table. When she is old enough, she and Lexie will share a room. That room downstairs needs new carpet, so I am hoping to find some beige on clearance or closeout for the cheap, then have someone like Carpet Now – Austin Carpet Installation install it. That room also needs new blinds. Desperately-I don’t know how old they are, but they are beyond being cleaned. I’d really like to do blackout shades (for naps and bedtime) and plantation shutters (since it’s on the front of the house, and I would like them across the front eventually anyway). Since we’re not finding out the sex, I’m going to pick out my bedding stuff and have it ready to order once baby arrives. I have an antique white crib picked out, and we will refinish JTom’s dresser for the baby. We will move all of JTom’s clothes into my closet (YIKES!), which means it will require a new hanging rod, so we have a top and bottom. A family member is giving us a cover for the 4wheelers, canoes, and camper. (we just have to get it moved to Hot Springs). Once we get it here, that will free up space in the barn, where all of JTom’s hunting stuff will go. That will also become his much needed shop. Yay! He may be losing a “boy room” for his junk, but he is gaining a shop .. sorta. All of this is subject to change with the rise and fall of my hormones. I am most excited about knocking out the wall, and new carpet in the new Baby’s room.

And … on to my most precious baby. Lexie is just going to be the best big sister ever. I know it. I want to take a sibling class, so when the new baby arrives, we can be sure to make her feel just as important as she does today. For instance, letting her come in the hospital room to see us first, spend time with Mommy and Daddy, then bring in the new baby. That way we are hers (lexie’s) and the new baby is ours, as a family. I want her to know that this baby is going to love her just like we love her. I want to foster a good relationship- I don’t find it humerus when children don’t enjoy their new siblings and parents think it’s cute. I understand it is natural, but rather than laugh at this emotional upset, it seems better to foster a love for the new baby. Not a jealous attitude towards it. But hey, that’s JUST me. I also don’t want everyone coming to the house at once to oogle the new baby. I think we need time, like last time, to bond as a family and let Lou get used to our new family arrangement.

Mamas with two or more- what do/did you do to foster a healthy relationship between your young children?


News and Nursery, Hooray!

Somehow I missed last week’s entry. Not sure what I was doing.. probably being lazy. =)

Well, update: we are 25 weeks along! Only 15 left, which is not very many to get everything done, about 3 full months if I go until the end of August. The only changes I have noticed are my back hurting, not sleeping through the night, and what may be the pregnancy ligament pain on my left side. It isn’t that bad, just shooting pains sometimes. I have a short torso, so I am thinking all this expanding in the way of my tummy is a little harder on that area. However, I have noticed I am carrying Lexie Raye more across, and less “out front,” if that makes sense. I have been told by several moms that this is what a girl does; and this is also how my mom carried me.

The doctor last Tuesday, May 11th, checked me for some swelling; he seemed to think there might be some in my ankles (which is probably from all that salt I am craving, before I never put sat on my food) but he said it is nothing really right now. Every time the nurser would try to get Lexie Raye’s (we are calling her by both names) heart beat, she would move in the other direction, but it was strong and fast. Dr. G also said she is growing fast! She is way above m belly button now, which seems weird to think about. Yesterday, I was on the phone with my mom and Granny, the phone was on speaker laying on my tummy while I laid in bed, and she was just kicking away while they were talking. It was the funniest thing, so I think she will know their voices when she arrives, because she sure liked them yesterday. =)

We have started on the nursery, and now I just need to do closets and cabinets (which is this weeks chore). After everything is thrown out and taken to Salvation Army, it will be time to wipe down baseboards, walls, and wash all the blinds in the house… Not sure how I am going to get the big window’s blinds washed, but I will figure it out!

J being the wonderful husband (and daddy) he is, painted the nursery, moved all the trash out, and moved the furniture in. We are on our way to progress! The crib is even more beautiful than I thought it would be in the nursery. The dress and chest of drawers look great and will be perfect for storage (since the closet is not very big). We decided to go with no doors on the closet; my mom and I are going to put up some curtains and tie them to the sides with bows. The closet is long and narrow, so with doors you just can’t get to the back and everything, so this will be a perfect, girly solution to that problem.

I have 3 pictures Ms. S got Lexie Raye for the nursery when we went shopping a few weeks ago, which I think will go perfectly in there! I just have to decide where I want them before I go putting holes in the wall. I cannot wait to get the bedding and J.’s rocking chair set up either! (Oh, so much to do!) I think I have decided to put the glider in the living room, but I am not sure yet. I do not know where I will spend the most time, in the living room or in the back of the house where our room and the nursery are. I will prob put the rocking chair in the nursery and the glider in the living room; but I have a feeling things will get moved around several times before I make up my mind…. poor J!

Here are some pictures of the nursery furniture, the walls are “Quaker Grass” green from Lowes. Below is the crib, my favorite piece of furniture in the entire house now! It is just perfect, and I cannot wait to get the bedding put on. =)

The piece on the left is the chest of drawers, and the right is the dresser. I am thinking I want to find a hanging mirror to go over the dresser, but I just don’t know what kind yet…

I think 2 of the pictures Ms. S for will go behind the chest of drawers with a small lamp. I can have some storage on top of the dresser, but the changing pad will be on top of it, so there will not be much room for a lot. I cannot wait to add all the finishing touches to the room! I think my friend J who is the crafting QUEEN wants to make the letters for Lexie Raye’s name to go over the crib. Which will be beautiful! Everything is coming together perfectly and I am so excited!!

Lots of love and prayers to family and friends! We miss you. We should be home the weekend of June 26th for the Memphis baby shower, so I will definitely see you then!

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